by Micheal Ace
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Magazine/Journal publication plays vital roles in writers literary pursuit. Here are some:
1. You reach a larger audience.
There are tendencies Facebook push your post to about 60% of your entire audience. Meaning if you have 5,000 friends. About 3,000 might see the post, & out of these lot, up to 1,200 people may react. But this doesn’t happen every day (except for Facebook celebrities, it may only happen on your birthday). So if you’re lucky to have up to 500 reactions on a single post, you might feel fly. Like you’re making it. & truly you are. But I still tell you it goes beyond that. Magazines increases the reach of your works. Most websites/blogs have up to 100,000 readers per day. Just do the statistics & find the truth yourself.
2. You have a reference link to your works.
The ongoing Brittle Paper Literary Award asked writers to nominate using links. Like what you need to provide is not the poem/story itself, but a directory to where it’s published. As long as the website is still hosted & the server alive, the link still remains valid, for years. & for journals/magazines that make hardcover prints, except burnt or torn, books will always be valid & referred to.
3. You’re building a reputation for your brand.
From the moment you decide to send out a work or enter any competition with your name, it’s no more a ‘name’ but a ‘brand’. Be it a pen name or whatever, as soon as it goes beyond a simple means of identity, then you’ve started building a brand with that name. & believe me; Google plays an important role in the growth of brands. Search your name on Google, look through the results, if you can’t find yourself in at least the first three pages, then you need to start doing something. The world is going virtual & we should all go with it.
4. You’re getting acquainted with the literary world.
Most of the winners of the recently held competitions: Babishai2018, Lipfest2018, Brunel2018, AWA2018 and others are Brittle Paparians (writers whose works have been featured on Brittle Paper). When you see writers include in their biography “…his/her works have been featured or forthcoming on Change Seven Magazine, African Writer, Praxis Magazine, Kahalari review and many more”, do you think it’s merely for formality sake? Of course it’s not. It shows the audience that beyond passion and normal exercise, writing to you is a profession. & somehow this earns you respect.
5. Lastly, if your fame as a writer (not just an entertainer or Facebook user) doesn’t go beyond Facebook, then something is wrong. Don’t get me wrong, I’m referring to professional writers here. Go out there, get featured, enter competitions outside here. Most writers are scared of entering Facebook contests because of the fear of losing out. But out there, no one will even know if you submit or not. They can only see your name in shortlist/longlist if you win. & if you’re still too weak to handle rejections, then you haven’t been doing enough. In four months, I have received three rejection mails from Split Lip Mag, among others. But who did I tell? No one. I’ll only rub the slam on my head, dust my muse and try again. You will only see them share their success stories here, they won’t tell you how many times they have tried & failed.